Moratorium on Delivery Unit Optimization (DUO) Implementations and Post Office Discontinuances Announced

From NAPUS.org truly good news. However this is respite, not victory. Please continue to contact your elected representatives about Senate Bill SB 1719 and related house bills. Also continue to fill out the comment forms and send them to Marcela Rivera in Denver, at USPS 7500 E. 53rd Pl. Denver, CO 80202.

Moratorium on Delivery Unit Optimization (DUO) Implementations and Post Office Discontinuances Announced

The Postal Service has issued a notice to all Area Vice Presidents, directing them to temporarily suspend all Delivery Unit Optimization(DUO) implementations and post office closings beginning November 19, 2011 through January 2, 2012.  Postal officials said the moratorium was issued in an effort to avoid service interruptions or logisitical challenges. Districts may proceed with the post office discontinuance process, including community meetings and related actions required prior to closing, but the physical closing of a post office or the physical relocation of routes from one office to another (DUO) will be temporarily suspended beginning November 19, 2011 through January 2, 2012.

NAPUS President Bob Rapoza, who sent a letter to Senate Committee leaders last week requesting the inclusion of a moratorium on post office closings as part of S. 1789, applauded the action by the Postal Service.  It should be noted that the NAPUS advanced amendment was included in yesterday’s markup of S. 1789. Under the Moran Amendment, the USPS must take into account proximity to customers, demography (age and population density), and transportation and climate challenges in remote areas in setting standards. Moreover, the amendment requires a moratorium on post office closures, pending the implementation of the retail standards (i.e., 6 months from the date of enactment).  Also, the standards would apply to communities that suffered the loss of their post office, during the time period one year prior to enactment (e.g., post office subject to the Retail Access Optimization Initiative).  The amendment carried the bipartisan sponsorship of  Senators Moran, Tester, Collins, Begich (D-AK), McCaskill (D-MO)  and Landrieu (D-LA); it was approved by 12-4 vote. The only Senators voting no were Sens. John McCain (R-AZ), Tom Coburn (R-OK),  Ron Johnson (R-WI), and Rand Paul (R-KY).

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